Hero Alex Schalk wins cup for Ross County fans

Ross County's Alex Schalk celebrates with the trophy. Picture: SNS
Ross County's Alex Schalk celebrates with the trophy. Picture: SNS
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Alex Schalk dedicated his match-winning goal to the Ross County support after the Highland side defeated Hibernian to lift the League Cup – the first major trophy in the club’s history.

Poised at 1-1 after Hibs defender Liam Fontaine cancelled out Michael Gardyne’s opener, the Hampden final looked set for extra-time before Gardyne’s cross was knocked into the path of Schalk two yards from goal. The striker hammered the ball into the net and leapt into the crowd in celebration.

Schalk admitted to having been inspired before the game by an emotional send off from the fans in Dingwall. “I’ve never felt like this,” said the Dutchman. “This is the best thing that’s happened in my career.

“When I scored I just went blank. I went to the fans because it was unbelievable for them. When we were driving through as we left Dingwall we had a small wave from the supporters and some, like older people, that have been a fan their entire lives were crying. It gave me goosebumps.

“It made me think it’s not about me scoring the winning goal. It’s not about any individual. It’s about them and getting the cup back to the Highlands for them. We re-wrote the history of the club today, but they deserve it so much.”